The existing Harford County Courthouse sits along Main Street in Bel Air, MD and was originally built in 3 phases. The original portion was built in 1858, an addition in 1904, and a second addition finished construction in 1981. MW Studios was approached by the Harford County Government to provide design services for a renovation to the 1981 portion of the historic building. The three main goals were to provide an additional courtroom to service their growing needs in the community, provide a larger and modernized jury selection area, and to maintain secure corridors for the safety of staff, visitors, and inmates. It was also important to both MW Studios and the Client to provide the necessary updates to the building while maintaining cohesiveness with the 1858 and 1904 portions of the building, all while being mindful of the County’s budget.
MW Studios evaluated the entire courthouse to determine the best locations to incorporate the desired program. The design resulted in a new courtroom, jury deliberation room, Judge’s chambers, support offices, and restrooms on the third floor of the 1981 portion, as well as a new jury selection area, kitchenette, restroom, meeting room, locker rooms, and check in area on the basement level.